Ian Grant opened the meeting by welcoming everybody, and in particular Yes Inch and Yes Pentlands.
There were 27 attendees
Apologies: Morag Orr, Barry Haniford, Pauline Ward, Peter Lynch, Tony Sutton, Mary Knox
The minutes of 18 January were proposed by Derek Mullin and seconded by Anne Donohue. As agreed, a bank account has been opened, and the Constitution and minutes posted on the website.
Anne Donohue gave a summary of progress at national level: National Yes Registry had a press launch on 3 June with the launch of a promo film on a local, grass roots level Scottish Independence supporting collective with 20 vanguard groups (connected by group email), including Yes Edinburgh West. The National Yes Registry name seems to have stuck. They have taken on an IT member of staff, who is liaising with contractors to cost a Forum mechanism. They intend to have a full launch on September 18, 2016. Yes Pentlands propose a meeting with all Edinburgh groups (30 June or 21 July) and the meeting agreed to support this. A call was made for clarity on the national body’s role and objectives – particularly their control and governance (Bob Glen to report at next meeting). So far, we’ve made 3 monthly stipend payments of £30 each, and propose to continue our support.
Ian Grant welcomed Andy Anderson, author of Moving On and Currency in an Independent Scotland. From the Scottish Independence Movement, Andy gave a quick briefing on Currency (and the importance of putting forward the arguments now) and is proposing to lead four 90 minute face-to-face meetings with 4 to 10 people prepared to contribute to a more detailed debate on the subject and formulation of a better policy platform for IndyRef2. No background in economics is needed. This met with broad agreement from the meeting – please advise Bob Glen if you want to participate (Iain Wright and Jim Scott are already in).
A good discussion ensued on the BBC/STV, Communications Act, Ofcom, license fees – the idea was floated that we should follow the Currency Group with a Media and Broadcasting Group – to discuss perceived bias in the media, and propose any action that could be taken. (In the bar later, support for a Land Reform Group was also mooted). If anybody wants to participate in either of these, please advise Bob Glen.
The Treasurer reported that a bank account (RBS) has been set up for Yes Edinburgh West. Iain Wright noted the importance of effective (bullet-proof) accounting procedures. Gerry has designed and built a new website, which has been favourably received. Jim Scott offered to help measure the impact of social media, as there has been a dip in activity. Please let Gerry know if you can help post content on social media, so that authorisations can be set up. Gerry has received a number of Wee Black Books for sale at £1
Ian Grant suggested we have a £10 annual subscription to cover costs (for Yes Registry and campaigning) but the meeting wasn’t keen. We should emulate the funding mechanism of Yes Rutherglen, who seem to be very successful. (Action: Bob Glen)
There was a discussion on what the role of Yes Edinburgh West should be: Campaigning, Discussion, Political Education, Events (Robin McAlpine, Andy Wightman, Liz Castro, Iain Black(SMAUG), Fundraising? Examples given were of too much information – we should be more selective in our messages, and we should use more posters to complement social media – to reach older people. Anybody interested in driving this forward please email Bob Glen.
Next meeting: after EU Referendum in the event of Brexit, Mon 27 June 2016, Clermiston Inn, 7.30pm otherwise, Mon 1 August 2016, Clermiston Inn, 7.30pm
AGM: Mon 3 October 2016, Clermiston Inn, 7.30pm
A collection was open, and £136.30 was donated and collected for books (£84 of which has to be remitted to Andy Anderson) i-Scot magazines and Wee Black Books – many thanks for your generosity, and to Ken McDonald for copies of i-Scot. This will ensure that we can meet our stipend to the National body.